Question: I wanted to ask a wise man, but I'll ask you instead. Which show came on TV first, The Addams Family or The Munsters? Second, is it true that the girl who played Wednesday grew up to do drugs and porn? Sorry to insult you. I just wanted to get your attention. Thanks. Warren
Televisionary: Ah, to bask in the love and respect of my public. I'll answer your questions, Warren, and not just because you flatter me so.
It's a tie. In keeping with the Hollywood tradition of throwing shows with similar concepts at the audience in the same season, The Addams Family and The Munsters both debuted in the fall of 1964, the former on ABC, the latter on CBS. (Technically speaking, The Addams Family launched first, six days before The Munsters, but let's not get too caught up in the details, huh?).
The two had quite a bit in common. Both were about monstrous families with pretty, spooky moms (Carolyn Jones's Morticia Frump Addams and Yvonne DeCarlo's Lily Munster). Each had their precocious, monstrous kids (Lisa Loring and Ken Weatherwax as Wednesday and Pugsley Addams and Butch Patrick as Eddie Munster). Both families were headed by dads who cared (John Astin as Gomez Addams and Fred Gwynne as Herman Munster) and each creepy household had its share of colorful relatives and pets.
For my money, both had equally great theme songs and it's a tough call as to who was cooler, the Munsters' pet dragon, Spot, or the Addams' Thing. However, The Addams Family wins the battle on the big screen, having generated two successful movie versions. (And we'll forgive them for that horrible Hammer song.)
As for your second question, actress Loring did indeed grow into a troubled adult, though her problems certainly started early in life. At 16, with a newborn at home and a marriage on the rocks, Loring's mother passed away. She had another child by her second husband that marriage also ended and after the relationship with her third husband, adult-film actor Paul Siederman, began to fray in 1991, she fell into drug abuse. Fortunately, she completed a stint in rehab in '92 and, by all accounts, has put her life back together.